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  1. #101
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Kadayi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NathanH View Post
    I don't really feel able to comment on whether RPS should consider them "failures as games", given that I haven't played them and I strongly reject the RPS definition of "game". They would certainly qualify as failures as games under my definition of games, but I don't think they're trying to be successful as games under that definition. But I would say that my impression is that they do indeed get some free credit based on the "gamer shame" of some people---those who are worried that their hobby may be a "waste of time" (whatever that means for a hobby!) and see these sorts of games as a kind of self-validation hence giving them more weight than they objectively deserve.
    Heh the 'game as Art' chestnut. As someone who went to Art college I do find the whole thing rather amusing in truth. Art as (political/personal) statement is within the grand scheme of things a relatively new phenomena, only really coming into it's own in the last couple of centuries to the extent that as a discipline/pursuit it peeled away from commercial Art & Design (a discipline which is in itself a relatively new concept as well) and become itís own industry, Vs being the thing that Artists did on their own time in between commercial work if they were so inclined. Francisco Goya is one of the first notable examples of this. A man who made his living painting portraits for the Royal, rich & famous, but spent his spare time doing a sideline in political commentary with works like his Caprichos prints: -

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Francisco_Goya

    People attach a degree of gravity to the word 'Art' as if it is somehow this ultimate sign of validation of a medium (whether it be music, film, television, games, etc, etc) and that any creative endeavour should aim towards such free expression but need to recognise that it is not the medium thatís important itís whatís being said/conveyed that counts.

    This to me is where the beliefs of the Roger Eberts of the world fall down. Certainly one can question the validity of the choice of a medium as to whether itís the appropriate conduit/means of distribution for the message, given that as Mcluhan rightly points out, all mediums possess their own strengths and weaknesses in terms of how we engage with them (thereís a massive difference between reading a book and imagining a story Vs watching a film of the same story for instance). But one canít question the message itself save on it's own terms.

    As I said earlier on Iím not convinced that either Dear Esther or 30 flights couldn't work equally well as films, principally because neither of them actually really leverage the very thing that makes games unique experiences from films, namely the interaction and feedback loop between you the player and the game world. For all intents and purposes they are machinima pieces that require you to press the move forward key occasionally to trigger the next sequence. An act no different than turning the page when reading a book.

    Thereís really no question in my mind that a game can be Art, the question is only whether a game is the appropriate format through which to express the message one wishes to convey.

    But then I have a similar impression about a lot of fans of Spec Ops, and I know you really like that game, so I don't want to push this line too hard. It's quite a tricky subject, given that I have not played any of these games, and wouldn't be interested to.
    I like Spec Ops in terms of what itís trying to do. I think itís a little heavy handed in what itís trying to say, and perhaps misses more often than it hits however what it very clearly does do is leverage the core interactive nature of the medium of games to put across its message by empowering you the player at key points to actually shape the experience and outcome in some form. Certainly it equally funnels you narratively at points as well, but the key thing is it would be hard to replicate the complete experience of Spec Ops in another medium, bar perhaps a choose your own adventure book.

    Again harking back to Mcluhan if the medium is the message in terms of distinctiveness, then whatís the message of games if not about interaction and player choice?

    Quote Originally Posted by Lambchops View Post
    If the forum was a sitcom then a few threads down the line Kadayi and Shooop would get drunk and after a hilarious set of unlikely occurrences end up having passionate, angry sex.
    The payoff would be Finicky wandering in with a Mariachi band in tow intent on making a wedding proposition. ;)

    *cue studio audience laughter*

    Trite silliness aside when it comes to Dear Esther and such things (I was about to say interactive entertainment but that would cover TV as you have to turn it on! Nevertheless you know the sort of thing I mean) I think they're worth discussing and don't mind them being highlighted or praised. I generally have mixed reactions to them. I thought the Passage was neatly done, I hated the path, I liked Gravity Bone and didn't particularly enjoy 30 Flights of Loving. It's pretty arbitrary and I think they are a lot more dependent on the mood I'm in than I am with games. Kind of in the same way that I have to be in the right frame of mind to enjoy certain books or films.
    Games are interactive media, Television and film are not. Turning on or off the remote doesn't qualify in terms of interacting with the actual medium, in the same sense as using a 360 controller or WASD to navigate a game level.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Finicky View Post
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  2. #102
    Lesser Hivemind Node Shooop's Avatar
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    Narcissism hoooooo!





    So what's the situation on ARMA 3 and the Greece crisis that shouldn't have been?
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  3. #103
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus soldant's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shooop View Post
    Narcissism hoooooo!
    Referring to Kadayi? Seriously what's with the commentary? It's one thing that really annoys me about the community lately - you can't discuss something like "what is a game?" without 20 people going "Oh not this again don't discuss that because no consensus is reached." Fair enough if it's a mod or something telling people to knock it off, but surely if you have no interest in a discussion the correct response is to not respond?

    They want to talk about Dear Esther or what is a game or... something, I can't actually recall. There's no malice or anything in that conversation. If you're not interested just stop reading. I find every post by Finicky to be inflammatory trash so I added him to my ignore list, same way I don't read anything by Tixxylixx (or whoever). There's absolutely no need for the snide remarks.

    Remember, it is our duty to be excellent to each other, lest the iron fist of tyranny falls upon us. And it'll come for all of us in the night, mark my words, repent before we're all strangled by its long grasp.

  4. #104
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kadayi View Post
    As someone who went to Art college
    That explains so much.

  5. #105
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Sketch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by soldant View Post
    Referring to Kadayi? Seriously what's with the commentary? It's one thing that really annoys me about the community lately - you can't discuss something like "what is a game?" without 20 people going "Oh not this again don't discuss that because no consensus is reached." Fair enough if it's a mod or something telling people to knock it off, but surely if you have no interest in a discussion the correct response is to not respond?

    They want to talk about Dear Esther or what is a game or... something, I can't actually recall. There's no malice or anything in that conversation. If you're not interested just stop reading. I find every post by Finicky to be inflammatory trash so I added him to my ignore list, same way I don't read anything by Tixxylixx (or whoever). There's absolutely no need for the snide remarks.

    Remember, it is our duty to be excellent to each other, lest the iron fist of tyranny falls upon us. And it'll come for all of us in the night, mark my words, repent before we're all strangled by its long grasp.
    To be fair, a lot of the discussions of what and what isn't a game - which fair enough are fine in themselves - always end up with someone getting pissed off and then it just evolves into a big pissing match dominated by a few posters, and the topic is wildly derailed with no one really posting because it just gets buried under all the crap. And it happens a lot.
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  6. #106
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Kadayi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Woundedbum View Post
    To be fair, a lot of the discussions of what and what isn't a game - which fair enough are fine in themselves - always end up with someone getting pissed off and then it just evolves into a big pissing match dominated by a few posters, and the topic is wildly derailed with no one really posting because it just gets buried under all the crap. And it happens a lot.
    TBH though Wounded, Nathan & myself are having a perfectly fine discussion about the whole subject (I'm actually finding it a good opportunity to crystalize my current thinking on the subject tbh), despite the attempts at derails. Feel free to join us if you like. What are you thoughts on Dear Esther or 30 flights?
    Why yes you're right I'm deliciously evil

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    *blush* I'm flattered by the attention boys, but please let's not make the thread about liddle old me


    Quote Originally Posted by Finicky View Post
    Kadayi will remain the worst poster on the interwebs.
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  7. #107
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus soldant's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Woundedbum View Post
    ...always end up with someone getting pissed off and then it just evolves into a big pissing match dominated by a few posters...
    Thing is I don't actually see this being the case. Debates do get heated but I don't often see people getting pissed off or getting involved in a pissing match. Sure people won't back down from their positions but I don't classify that as "getting pissed off." Kadayi and NathanH aren't tearing at each other's throats and show no indications of it.

    Again if a mod or something decides it's out of line then fine, there's no such thing as free speech, but lately it seems like the RPS community will shout down anybody approaching a topic where there's no consensus. You can't question indies, you can't discuss what is or isn't a game, you can't discuss the merits of art games (except to say "They're great"), you can't discuss whether a Kickstarter project should exist or not... approach any of them and out come the cries of "No it's just going to turn into a pissing match don't even think about discussing it." The fact that you might not reach consensus shouldn't make a discussion off limits, should it? I can only agree that CoD is stale and consoles are doing/not doing Something (trademark?) to PC gaming so many times.

  8. #108
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    Shut up soldant, all you're doing is creating a pissing contest with this argument.

  9. #109
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Sketch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kadayi View Post
    TBH though Wounded, Nathan & myself are having a perfectly fine discussion about the whole subject (I'm actually finding it a good opportunity to crystalize my current thinking on the subject tbh), despite the attempts at derails. Feel free to join us if you like. What are you thoughts on Dear Esther or 30 flights?
    To be honest I don't know enough about 30 Flights to really pass judgement on it, it's sort of passed me by, but regarding Dear Esther, I'm kind of torn as to what I think of it. I definitely think there is a place for these sorts of 'games' even though I agree you could potentially make them into films. I wonder if it might be because it's easier for some to create moods and atmosphere's in a 3D world than it is to shoot film and make it atmospheric. I can imagine myself for example, if I ever felt the need to create an experience like that, my preference would probably be to make it using a game engine rather than filming it. Dear Esther managed to feel a bit more like 'my' experience as I would imagine a film made with the same plot would be.

    Does anyone know what Dear Esther cost to make? That would certainly be interesting to see.

    And Soldant, I think it does happen quite a lot. Too much really. Kadayi and NathanH are fine and I agree that their discussion is perfectly reasonable, but there are a few on RPS now who instead of being able to put forward an opinion simply just bash them with ridiculous statements because they like to provoke and we end up with a little war than sometimes spans into more than one topic and it's a right kick in the balls to deal with. You say you just ignore Finicky, which yes, is the right thing to do, but quite a lot of people get baited by his or someone similars statements, which detracts from the point they were originally trying to debate so with end up with a clash of egos rather than opinions. I'm not asking anyone to agree, and I spend a quite of bit of time on RPS reading discussion that I find interesting, but have no intention of taking part in, yet I find myself more and more having to skip through stuff just so I can find the actual content rather than the mandatory insult that comes before it. I actually have no problem with off-topic discussion, just the general territory it strays into when it occurs.
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  10. #110
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus soldant's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mohorovicic View Post
    Shut up soldant, all you're doing is creating a pissing contest with this argument.
    Yeah, well, my piss is... bigger than yours? Stronger? I don't know, what's the correct comeback?

    Quote Originally Posted by Woundedbum View Post
    You say you just ignore Finicky, which yes, is the right thing to do, but quite a lot of people get baited by his or someone similars statements...
    Finicky and Tixxylixx are just out to inflame situations though, that's a bit different from this case. I'm not suggesting that your observations are inaccurate for other threads (they certainly are) but a lot of the time lately the complaints are raised before things are heading into stormy weather, whether it shows signs of it or not.

  11. #111
    Moderator QuantaCat's Avatar
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    ok, kad made me look at this thread, and I think I want to join in.

    I just played 30 flights, so its fresh on my mind: I come from the film industry side, so I dont really see the "need" for this to be a game. it feels like a huge quicktime event, not that Im saying I hated it, not at all, but its just a short film where you also move a mouse and hit some keys on the keyboard.

    For me, the game that was just on the border of "being a game" was Longest Journey: Dreamfall. I loved that game, but I have to admit, it was very ungamey, mostly because the game elements didnt really have an impact on the actual game. You went, you quickly did them, and then you continued the story. Still one of my favourite games.

    I have to admit: Im making a game. My game is on that border of "is it really a game? is it just a story with some slightly interactive bits?". Im very impressed by how Amanita Design have handled the whole "is it a game or isnt it?" with Machinarium and Botanicula, so its definitely very much in that vein, only with storytelling, not "graphical/audible discovery" at its core. I want to see if its possible, and enjoyable, to explore a story, not just a place. At one point in the writing on the concept for my game, I just felt like it was necessary to add the ability to change the story. Not just explore the background, but change whatever you see and hear in the foreground. I think we've nailed it pretty solidly, but I guess we'll see at the end of the development cycle.

    Again, not saying these games shouldnt exist either, but people experiment with some weird art stuff without using games, I dont necessarily have to like it. I like games to be interactive, to have elements of games in it, its the only electronic media that can do that, to ignore that on purpose seems a bit.. well, useless. Go make a film if you want, use the Q2 engine, why not, but why add controls, it just boggles the mind.

    Id rather go replay Myst for a very raily, fantastic first person story.
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  12. #112
    Moderator QuantaCat's Avatar
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    Oh for fucks sake, Dear Esther's trailer made me throw up. (figuratively)

    Bad poetry told over a weirdly lit island in the background?

    Whatever they have done, Myst has done ten times better twenty years earlier.
    - Tom De Roeck.

    verse publications

    "Quantacat's name is still recognised even if he watches on with detached eyes like Peter Molyneux over a cube in 3D space, staring at it with tears in his eyes, softly whispering... Someday they'll get it."

    "It's frankly embarrassing. The mods on here are woeful."

    "I wrinkled my nose at QC being a mod."

    "At least he has some personality."

  13. #113
    Lesser Hivemind Node Shooop's Avatar
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    I'm perfectly happy to discuss most topics soldant, but only if the other people discussing them aren't being hypocritical, narcissistic, childish twits to me in the process.

    Since you're not I'll share my thoughts on Dear Ester with you:

    It's a nice interactive experiment that RPS probably thought deserved some attention just because of how unusual it was. I most definitely wouldn't call it a good game though. I probably wouldn't have featured it on of my "best games of the year" list for that year because I really didn't enjoy it, but I can understand why the writers of RPS did.
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  14. #114
    Moderator QuantaCat's Avatar
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    dear lord, a proper response from shoop? I AM SHOCKED, SIR.

    But from what little I saw of it, I will agree with you. Definitely something I dont ever want to play, no matter how moody it is.
    - Tom De Roeck.

    verse publications

    "Quantacat's name is still recognised even if he watches on with detached eyes like Peter Molyneux over a cube in 3D space, staring at it with tears in his eyes, softly whispering... Someday they'll get it."

    "It's frankly embarrassing. The mods on here are woeful."

    "I wrinkled my nose at QC being a mod."

    "At least he has some personality."

  15. #115
    Obscure Node Thunderpunch's Avatar
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    I think we're going to see the free-to-play market expand drastically, especially with Nintendo jumping on board. It will be interesting to see how legitimate ip's handle the business model in a way that's acceptable to the average gamer.

  16. #116
    Lesser Hivemind Node Shooop's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by QuantaCat View Post
    dear lord, a proper response from shoop? I AM SHOCKED, SIR.

    But from what little I saw of it, I will agree with you. Definitely something I dont ever want to play, no matter how moody it is.
    The scariest part about it is all it required was someone not being a condescending ass about asking for it! I shudder to think how it may ever happen again.

    I tried the demo for about an hour and got hopelessly stuck. I didn't see any reason to go back to it even if I asked for help after that because I'd already seen its entire bag of tricks by then - go to a location and hear a narration, repeat until you've heard enough/gotten tired of just holding the W key.

    So yay for the focus on narration in a wholly unorthodox manor, but nay on the "game" itself. Hopefully it's an inspiration for others to follow and offer us more of a game with it.
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  17. #117
    Moderator QuantaCat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shooop View Post
    The scariest part about it is all it required was someone not being a condescending ass about asking for it! I shudder to think how it may ever happen again.

    I tried the demo for about an hour and got hopelessly stuck. I didn't see any reason to go back to it even if I asked for help after that because I'd already seen its entire bag of tricks by then - go to a location and hear a narration, repeat until you've heard enough/gotten tired of just holding the W key.

    So yay for the focus on narration in a wholly unorthodox manor, but nay on the "game" itself. Hopefully it's an inspiration for others to follow and offer us more of a game with it.
    well thats the thing. I think narration in an experimental fashion just for the fuck of it, isnt really worth it. Do something with the narration that is atleast fucking interesting, not just "go here, listen to sounds"

    Whats the point of the medium then? weve had "games" like these before; they were called CDi.
    - Tom De Roeck.

    verse publications

    "Quantacat's name is still recognised even if he watches on with detached eyes like Peter Molyneux over a cube in 3D space, staring at it with tears in his eyes, softly whispering... Someday they'll get it."

    "It's frankly embarrassing. The mods on here are woeful."

    "I wrinkled my nose at QC being a mod."

    "At least he has some personality."

  18. #118
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus sonson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by QuantaCat View Post
    well thats the thing. I think narration in an experimental fashion just for the fuck of it, isnt really worth it. Do something with the narration that is atleast fucking interesting, not just "go here, listen to sounds"

    Whats the point of the medium then? weve had "games" like these before; they were called CDi.
    This has only just occured to me but most sandbox games actually have huge elements of this sort of thing. Except it's "Go here, eat a burger" in GTA IV or "Go here, look at a panorama" in Guild Wars 2. Granted it's not all there is but I'd wager a lot of people spend hours doing the sum total of fuck all in games along these lines where no story line is advanced, no character enhancement is made and the like. Just interacting with simple things that are there becuase you can. Hmm.

  19. #119
    Lesser Hivemind Node Shooop's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by QuantaCat View Post
    well thats the thing. I think narration in an experimental fashion just for the fuck of it, isnt really worth it. Do something with the narration that is atleast fucking interesting, not just "go here, listen to sounds"

    Whats the point of the medium then? weve had "games" like these before; they were called CDi.
    Yikes, and people say I can be heavy-handed. Bringing up CDi, OUCH!

    But yes absolutely, if your only feature is the way your narrative is delivered then you have failed to actually make a game. Hell even if Spec Ops was entirely forgettable pop-and-shoot gameplay, at least it was gameplay. Simply moving around to trigger scripted narration is somewhat interesting maybe the first 2-3 times but it wears thin very quickly.

    With any luck someone will take some inspiration from Ester and do something more with it. The explosive rise of the indie scene just might give us that.
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  20. #120
    Moderator QuantaCat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shooop View Post
    Yikes, and people say I can be heavy-handed. Bringing up CDi, OUCH!

    But yes absolutely, if your only feature is the way your narrative is delivered then you have failed to actually make a game. Hell even if Spec Ops was entirely forgettable pop-and-shoot gameplay, at least it was gameplay. Simply moving around to trigger scripted narration is somewhat interesting maybe the first 2-3 times but it wears thin very quickly.

    With any luck someone will take some inspiration from Ester and do something more with it. The explosive rise of the indie scene just might give us that.
    Well thats the thing you see, which is why I think Far Cry 3 is such a masterpiece in disguise. I did pick up on the parody that the writer put in there, and I did see all of those things. Its basically a parody of AAA games, in the guise of an AAA game with all the trimmings and marketing.

    I work with "artists" a lot, but the ones I like most are the ones that actually entertain as well as do new and weird stuff. Thats the trick you see. And if I ever make a game that isnt a) a game and b) interesting/funny; you feel free to tell me and I will listen to your "complaint".
    - Tom De Roeck.

    verse publications

    "Quantacat's name is still recognised even if he watches on with detached eyes like Peter Molyneux over a cube in 3D space, staring at it with tears in his eyes, softly whispering... Someday they'll get it."

    "It's frankly embarrassing. The mods on here are woeful."

    "I wrinkled my nose at QC being a mod."

    "At least he has some personality."

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